seahawks

Crunch Time – Your Seahawks Visit Chiefs In NFL Week 11

This Is A Tough One for Hawks

The Seattle Seahawks head to the barbecue capital of the world Sunday to meet the Kansas City Chiefs.  With the Seahawks still two games down to the Cardinals in the NFC West, every game has become critical.

Historically speaking, winning in Kansas City has not come easy for the Seahawks.  The former conference rivals squared off often in the past.  Seattle compiled just an 18-32 record against their former divisional foes but who could forget some of the dramatic wins that they did have there.

Sack me eight times, but I'll beat you if you try for nine.

Sack me eight times, but I’ll beat you if you try for nine.

One that comes to mind is certainly the Derrick Thomas eight sack game.  Then Seahawk QB, Dave Krieg, narrowly avoided a ninth pasting by Thomas and with just four ticks left on the clock fired a prayer into the endzone that was caught by former UW star Paul Skansi for the game winning touchdown.

It was certainly a game that I will never forget, but enough reminiscing.  Here’s what I’ll be watching for Sunday as the Seahawks take on the Chiefs in a near must win situation.

Injuries

While still beat up and with new injuries occurring almost daily, it’s hard to get optimistic about the Seahawks overall player health.  It is improving though, just slowly.

We now know that tight end Zach Miller is done for the year.  The Seahawks also announced that Brandon Mebane‘s hamstring will finish his season.  Bobby Wagner is not done for the year but he will miss another game with his toe injury.  Also unlikely to play are rookie linebacker Brock Coyle, and starting left guard James Carpenter.

The good news here is that Kam Chancellor should be back this week.  Also back to full strength is Byron Maxwell.  That means the entire Legion of Boom will be starting for the first time since the Cowboys game on 10/12.

Malcolm Smith will also be playing.  That will allow K.J. Wright to move inside to replace Wagner while Bruce Irvin anchors the linebacker spot on the other side.

Replacing Mebane will be much more difficult.  Kevin Williams, Jordan Hill and Tony McDaniel will likely rotate as the defensive line rotates in a run stuffing package.

Russell Wilson

Which version of Wilson will show up in KC?

The last bit of, um, good news is that Luke Willson should be okay after leaving the game last week early with a sprained ankle.  Given Willson’s hands of stone, I’m hoping that we get our first look at newly signed tight end Tony Moeaki this week.  How fitting too given that Moeaki last played as a KC Chief.

Russell Wilson and the O-Line

Which Russell Wilson is going to show up this week?  The Seahawks need their start quarterback to step up his game throwing the ball.

While Wilson has certainly been inaccurate given plenty of time to throw, he’s also been inaccurate with no time to throw as well thanks to a combination of poor pass protection and multiple injuries on the offensive line.

Carpenter is the only starter on the line out this week so that should help some but the Chiefs also have a guy named Justin Houston who leads the NFL with 12 sacks.  Houston attacks from multiple positions along the line so wherever he lines up, watch the battle there.  Alvin Bailey will get the call for the Seahawks in replacement of Carpenter.

Run the ball, Bev

The Seahawks steamrolled the Giants with the run game last week and I’d look for Seattle to run right at the Chiefs in similar fashion this week.

In terms of rushing yardage allowed per game, the Chiefs rank just 20th in the NFL.  Look for Seattle to pound the ball with Marshawn Lynch yet again.  Lynch does have some sore ribs but is expected to play.  If his condition worsens in this game it could be really bad news for the Seahawks.

The Chiefs have the number one ranked passing defense in the NFL.  They accomplish this with a potent pass rush and really solid secondary play.  Sounds familiar doesn’t it?

It could get ugly quickly if Lynch goes down and/or Wilson is forced to turn to the air.

Special teams play

The Seahawks just have to play cleanly on special teams if they expect to walk into KC and come out with a victory.

In previous weeks the Hawks have allowed big returns on punts and on kickoffs, had punts of their owned blocked and been the victims of fake kicks.  They narrowly escaped fumbling away an onside kick as well.

That stuff just can’t happen.  I’m not saying they need to come up with big scoring special teams plays of their own, but they certainly can’t allow big yardage and/or points plays by KC.

Final Thoughts/Prediction

This is going to be a brutal, physical game to say the least and also think it’s going to be relatively low scoring.  There might be just one or two touchdowns scored in this game combined.   Seahawks edge out the Chiefs 13-10.

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About Brian Scott

Husband, Philosopher, Animal Rights Advocate, and Author Brian is a Spokane native and Gonzaga University grad. Seahawks, Mariners, GU Hoops and Cougar football are the teams that drive his passion for sports. You can catch him on twitter too! Connect with Brian today!
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